We are so often prone to focus exclusively on the academic achievements and potential future careers of our children that we neglect the importance of their spiritual, artistic, and creative awakening. Engaging in creative activities and processes improves your child’s physical and psychological well-being, helps builds their skills and creative thinking, and opens their minds to a variety of possibilities and opportunities. However, without their parents’ support and encouragement, children are unlikely to pursue their creative ambitions and develop talents on their own. Support from both school and home is key to a child’s academic and creative development, progress, and motivation. Here are some of the most useful techniques to ignite your child’s inner creativity and artistic passion.
Encourage your child to express themselves
The best way to incite creativity in your child from an early age is to provide them with basic materials, such as a piece of paper and a smooth and easy ballpoint pen for their first creative expressions. Creating such a habit for them in between playing with toys and watching cartoons will serve as a basis for their further artistic development in various directions. If possible, you might also provide them with a little creative corner in your home space, with boards, canvases, pens, paper, paint, or even costumes and requisites. Of course, a digital notebook is also an option, especially if you can’t afford such a space and the accompanying chaos in your home environment.
Suggested Read – On Motherhood & Creativity: How does having kids affect your work? 4 creative women share their stories.
Bedtime storytelling boosts inner creativity
Reading to your children before putting them to bed every night is a traditional parenting technique. However, it’s also a very effective motivational factor when it comes to evoking your child’s imagination and desire to invent, write, and tell stories. Moreover, listening to enchanting stories and characters before sleep can trigger your child’s mind to dream more vividly and hence improve their creative and inventive competencies.
Inspire your child with your own creativity
Parents are every child’s most important role models – at least until they enter the craziness of teenage puberty and start looking at their family as their ultimate nemesis. But hey, no worries, this is just a short-term crisis that every parent goes through. However, while they’re still little, cute, and loving, remember that whatever you do will inspire them to try doing the same. Starting with the bedtime stories we mentioned above, use your storytelling prowess to inspire them to want to read or make up their own stories that they’ll wish to put on paper someday. Show them your art from when you were younger, sing to them, or let them assist you while baking a cake, this will spring up their inner creativity. Really any craft or talent they recognize within you can serve as a powerful inspiration that they might want to pursue.
Sign them up for art courses
Keep in mind that whichever creative endeavour your child chooses to pursue, it does not have to be a professional goal. Simply dabbling in arts, with no specific intention, will benefit the child and awaken their curiosity and open-mindedness. However, it certainly can be a potential future profession – and thus nurturing their talents through various art courses and private schools could be a wise investment.
Praise the process, not the product
Regardless of whether you wish your child to become an artist, a crafter, or a singer, you need to be very careful not to push your kid too far when encouraging them to take up a certain creative activity. Do not give overly-detailed instructions, force them through the creative process in a micromanaging manner, or reward them for exhibiting inner creativity – incentives may limit their artistic freedom and flexibility. Allow and encourage your child to be free and autonomous in their art and try not care about their achievements. Constantly remind them that there is no right or wrong in creative expression and that nothing binds them to stick to any one style, technique, or discipline.
Inner creativity and artistic passion are key components of health and happiness and therefore primary skills to practice with your children. Remember that this entails a wide range of creative pursuits, including dramatic expressions, creative responses to problems, crafts, but also physical artistic expression like ballet. Creativity is not something to be limited or pushed upon a kid – all you need to do as a parent is to provide the resources they need for self-expression support their artistic pursuits and foster their creativity by emphasizing the beauty of the process rather than the product.
Stella van Lane is a Sydney based mom and a passionate writer in love with coffee, chocolate, music, books and good vibes. Her top interests are health, yoga, meditation and interior design.
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